Best Generator for Hot Water Heater: Top Choices

Last Updated on September 28, 2023 by kiezelamquiz

A utility area where a portable generator is stationed next to a hot water heater.

Ever found yourself in a cold shower because of a power outage? Having the best efficient generator to power your hot water heater can be a game changer.

The best generator for a hot water heater is one that adequately meets the power needs of your system, ensuring continuous heated water supply. Top options range from the reliable Honda EU2200i to the powerful Westinghouse WGen9500.

Let’s delve deeper into why you need a generator for your hot water heater, and learn how different types can influence your choice. We’ll also explore detailed reviews of the top five picks and provide useful tips to guide you on your quest to find the best generator for your needs.

Top 5 Best Generators for Hot Water Heaters (Starting With The Top 3)

Honda EU2200i

WEN 56200i

Generac GP8000E

The Honda EU2200i Generator The WEN 56200i Generator The Generac GP8000E Generator
2,200 Watts 2,000 Watt 8,000 Watt
46.5 pounds 48 pounds 214 pounds
Fuel efficient Very quiet Large fuel tank capacity
Less noise Portable design Easy electric start
Lightweight and compact Produces clean power Durable and rigid
Check Price Check Price Check Price
Read more here… Read more here… Read more here…


Choosing the best generator for your hot water heater can feel overwhelming, given the multitude of options available. But worry not! We’ve narrowed down the top five generators that are up for the task.

1. Honda EU2200i

The Honda EU2200i Generator

The Honda EU2200i stands out for its reliability and fuel efficiency. This inverter generator can deliver a steady power output of 2200 watts, suitable for most gas water heaters and some smaller electric models.

What sets Honda EU2200i apart is its Eco-Throttle System, which allows the generator to automatically adjust its engine speed to produce only the power needed for the load connected. This leads to excellent fuel efficiency, resulting in longer run times and lesser fuel consumption.

The generator also boasts a quiet operation, making it an excellent choice for residential areas where noise can be a concern. Additionally, it’s compact and lightweight, ensuring easy portability. In many Honda EU2200i generator review, customers share great feedbacks about their experience with this powerful and reliable generator.

Pros & Cons of The Honda EU2200i


  • Fuel efficient
  • Less noise
  • Lightweight and compact


  • Smaller fuel tank capacity
  • More expensive compared to other models with similar features
  • Does not come with a fuel gauge

2. WEN 56200i

The WEN 56200i Generator

The WEN 56200i is another excellent choice, offering a good balance between power and quiet operation. This inverter generator can deliver 2000 watts of power, making it a good fit for gas water heaters and smaller electric models.

Is WEN 56200i worth your money? This generator operates at a quiet 51 decibels, which is quieter than a window air conditioner. This makes it a great choice for use in residential areas or camping sites where noise regulations are strict.

WEN 56200i’s eco-mode helps improve fuel efficiency by adjusting fuel consumption as items are plugged and unplugged from the panel. It also has a lightweight and compact design for easier transportation and storage.

Pros & Cons of The WEN 56200i


  • Operates at a very quiet 53 decibels at quarter load
  • Lightweight design
  • Produces clean power


  • Smaller fuel tank capacity
  • Does not have a fuel shut-off feature

3. Generac GP8000E: High Power Output for Larger Systems

The Generac GP8000E Generator

If you have a larger electric hot water heater or intend to power several appliances simultaneously, the Generac GP8000E could be your best bet. This powerful generator can deliver a whopping 8000 watts of continuous power, adequate for virtually any residential hot water system.

The Generac GP8000E is considered the best electric start gas-powered portable generator. It comes with an electric start for easy operation. It also has an hour meter, which helps keep track of maintenance intervals.

While it’s not as quiet or compact as the first two options, its high power output makes up for these drawbacks. If power is your primary concern, the Generac GP8000E is a solid choice.

Pros & Cons of The Generac GP8000E


  • Large fuel tank capacity
  • Easy electric start
  • Has a hardened steel-tube cradle for added durability and strength


  • Heavier than other models
  • Noisy at 74 dBA
  • Does not have a fuel efficiency mode

4. Westinghouse WGen9500

The Westinghouse WGen9500 Generator

The Westinghouse WGen9500 is a standout option for those who prioritize long run times. With a fuel capacity of 6.6 gallons and an impressive runtime of up to 17.5 hours on a full tank, this generator ensures your hot water supply remains uninterrupted for longer.

This generator offers a power output of 9500 watts, adequate for large electric water heaters. It also features a convenient remote start, a useful feature when you need to start the generator from a distance.

Although larger and heavier than portable inverter generators, it comes with a wheel kit and handle for easier mobility. Its high power output, extended run times, and durability make it a top pick for powering hot water heaters. The WGen9500 is considered one of the best Westinghouse portable generators.

Pros & Cons of The Generac GP8000E


  • High power output
  • Comes with a remote start key fob for ease of use
  • Large fuel tank capacity


  • One of the heavier models
  • More expensive than other models with similar features
  • Does not have a fuel efficiency mode

5. Yamaha EF2000iSv2

The Yamaha EF2000iSv2 Generator


If you’re looking for a lightweight, portable generator that doesn’t skimp on power, the Yamaha EF2000iSv2 is worth considering. This inverter generator can provide 2000 watts of power, enough for most gas-powered water heaters and smaller electric ones.

Weighing in at just 44.1 pounds, this generator is a breeze to transport and store. It’s ideal for those who live off-grid or love camping. Despite its small size, it has excellent fuel efficiency and operates quietly.

One of the standout features of the Yamaha EF2000iSv2 is its ability to adjust engine speed to match the load. This ensures optimal fuel efficiency and decreases wear and tear, prolonging the lifespan of the generator.

Pros & Cons of The Yamaha EF2000iSv2


  • Quiet 51.5 dBA at 1/4 load, making it less disruptive
  • Has a Smart throttle feature, improving fuel efficiency
  • Compact and lightweight


  • Smaller fuel tank
  • Does not come with a fuel gauge

Why You Need a Generator for Your Hot Water Heater

Seamless hot water supply is a necessity, not a luxury. And in situations where regular power sources fail you, a generator can be your savior. Let’s explore how generators play a crucial role in this process and the challenges they can help you overcome.

The Role of Generators in Ensuring Hot Water Supply

A generator acts as a power backup for your hot water heater. When there’s a power outage, it can promptly supply the needed electricity, keeping your hot water heater functioning as usual. So, you don’t have to worry about suddenly running out of hot water in the middle of a bath.

For those residing in areas prone to frequent blackouts or extreme weather conditions, investing in a good generator is a smart move. It ensures your hot water supply remains uninterrupted, providing you with comfort and convenience during challenging times.

Additionally, if you live off-grid or occasionally go for camping trips, a portable generator can be hugely beneficial. It can power your portable hot water heater, ensuring you don’t have to sacrifice hot water supply while living amidst nature.

The Challenges of Power Outages and Off-Grid Living

Power outages can be a huge inconvenience, causing numerous appliances, including your hot water heater, to stop functioning. And while a chilly shower might be invigorating in the summers, it isn’t so pleasant during colder months. Having a generator can alleviate these problems by ensuring a steady power supply.

If you live off-grid or plan to do so, your power sources might be limited. While solar power is a common choice, it’s not always reliable, especially not during the night or cloudy days. A generator can be a dependable power source for your hot water heater in such situations.

For those who love camping, a portable generator can be a real boon. While camping is all about embracing nature, a hot shower can be a comforting luxury after a long day of hiking. Ensuring your portable hot water heater is powered up can enhance your camping experience significantly.

Understanding the Power Requirements of a Hot Water Heater

Ensuring that your chosen generator can meet the power demands of your hot water heater is crucial. This involves understanding the fundamental differences between electric and gas water heaters and the importance of calculating total wattage needs. Let’s dive deeper into these areas.

Power Needs of Electric vs. Gas Water Heaters

Electric water heaters typically require more power compared to their gas counterparts. This is because electric heaters rely entirely on electricity to heat the water, unlike gas heaters that use gas as the primary heating source.

Most residential electric water heaters require around 4,500 watts on startup and around 1,500 watts during operation. On the other hand, gas water heaters need electricity just for their digital displays and ignition, demanding only about 500 watts.

Therefore, if you have an electric water heater, you would need a more powerful generator. For gas water heaters, even a smaller generator would suffice, as long as it can handle the initial startup wattage.

The Importance of Calculating Total Wattage Needs

When choosing a generator, it’s not just the hot water heater’s power consumption you need to consider. You also have to take into account the wattage requirements of other critical appliances you intend to power during an outage. Adding up these values will give you your total wattage needs.

To calculate this, list all the appliances and their respective wattages. Be sure to account for both running and starting wattage, as some appliances require more power to start. The sum of these values will guide you in choosing a generator with the appropriate power capacity.

Remember, you should aim to utilize only about 80% of your generator’s capacity. This avoids overloading and prolongs the lifespan of your generator. It also leaves room for any additional appliances you might need to power in the future.

Key Factors to Consider When Choosing a Generator for a Hot Water Heater

Choosing the best generator for your hot water heater isn’t just about picking one from the list. There are several factors to consider, including the generator’s size, fuel efficiency, run time, and usability. Let’s dig into each of these aspects.

A hot water heater in the utility area.

Generator Size and Power Capacity

The first factor you need to consider is the right generator size to run water heater and its power capacity.  This refers to the amount of electricity it can produce. It’s crucial to choose a generator that can meet the power requirements of your hot water heater and other essential appliances.

A generator too small may not start or run your water heater or could cause damage to the generator itself. On the other hand, a too large generator will be excessively costly and consume more fuel than necessary.

As a rule of thumb, aim for a generator that can produce 1.5 times the total wattage needed by your appliances. This should provide a sufficient power cushion for startup surges and prevent overloading.

Fuel Efficiency

Fuel efficiency directly influences the running cost and the number of refilling trips you’ll make. More fuel-efficient generators can run longer on the same amount of fuel, saving you money in the long run.

Inverter generators are typically more fuel-efficient than conventional ones, as they can adjust the engine speed based on the power demand. This not only saves fuel but also results in quieter operation and less wear on the engine over time.

Look for features like Eco-mode or similar power-saving modes. These modes allow the generator to adjust its power output based on the load, further improving fuel efficiency.

Run Time

Run time is the duration a generator can operate on a full fuel tank. Longer run times mean less frequent refuelling, which is especially beneficial during extended power outages.

It’s important to remember that run time depends on the load. The more appliances you connect, the lesser the run time. Therefore, consider your essential appliances and how long you generally need them during a power outage.

Run time is often given by manufacturers for 50% and 25% loads. To get a more accurate estimate for your needs, you might need to do some calculations based on your specific load.

Portability and Ease of Use

While a generator may stay put most of the time, you’ll appreciate portability features when you need to move it. Look for generators with wheel kits and handles.

Ease of use is another crucial factor. Features like an electric start can make a big difference in how easy a generator is to use. Additionally, clear and intuitive controls and interfaces help reduce the learning curve and make operation smoother.

For those who may need to use the generator in different locations, such as for camping trips or tailgating parties, a lightweight, compact design is beneficial.

Safety and Maintenance Tips for Your Generator

To ensure your generator serves you effectively for years, regular maintenance is key. Alongside, observing safety rules can protect both your home and your equipment.

  1. Regular maintenance is crucial to keep your generator in good working order. This involves changing the oil regularly, usually after every 100 hours of operation, and replacing the air filter as needed.
  2. Other routine checks include inspecting the fuel filter and the spark plugs. These parts may require cleaning or replacement depending on their condition.
  3. Proper storage is also part of maintenance. When not in use, store your generator in a dry, clean place. If you won’t be using it for a long time, drain the fuel to prevent gumming and varnishing that can clog the fuel system.
  4. When operating a generator, safety should be your priority. One critical rule is never to run a generator inside your home, garage, or any enclosed space, as it can produce deadly carbon monoxide gas.
  5. Keep your generator dry and operate it on a dry surface under an open, canopy-like structure. Don’t touch the generator with wet hands, as this could cause electric shock.

Harnessing the Power: Choosing the Best Generator for Your Hot Water Heater

Choosing a generator for your hot water heater involves considering your power needs, the type of water heater you have, and the other appliances you intend to power. You also need to take into account factors like fuel efficiency, run time, portability, and ease of use.

Once you’ve chosen your generator, remember to maintain it regularly and follow safety precautions while operating it. This will ensure your generator lasts longer and serves you effectively.

Whether you live in an area prone to power outages, live off-grid, or enjoy camping trips, a reliable generator can ensure you always have hot water when you need it. It’s an investment in your comfort and convenience. is an independent review business. I am not affiliated with any manufacturers and do not accept paid reviews. When you buy through my links, I may earn a commission which helps me purchase more generators for testing. - Scott Krager

Leave a Reply